Defending two-time champion Roger Federer took two and half hour to overcome Dan Evans in the second round of the Australian Open on Wednesday. The Swiss tennis great battled hard against the British qualifier to secure a 7-6 (7-5), 7-6 (7-3), 6-3 win at the Rod Laver Arena.
World No 3 Federer had a litmus test to make into the third round as the 28-year-old Briton forced to tie breaks in the first and second sets. The ageless 20-time Grand Slam champion, who is bidding for a record third consecutive Australian Open title, made a number of unforced errors. He took an hour to break the tiebreaker 5-3 lead set by the world number 189.
Evans, who had made it to the fourth round at the Australian Open two years ago, came back from 4-2 to make it 5-5. Eventually, he made a 6-5 lead in the second set.
However, the 37-year-old legend was too good as he fought back to level at 6-6. He went on to start with 3-0 up in the tie breaker but Evans made another come back, making it 5-3.
The third set was a less stiff competition, with the six-time Melbourne champion dominating the second tie break till the match point.
Federer will take on American youngster Taylor Fritz in the round of 32 on Friday.